Tag Archives: Cage

August 2011!

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Yeah! Yet another month has arrived, and now it’s August! August makes me a bit sad because it just reminds me that we only have a whole month left of summer break, and everyone will be back to school or work again! I’m planning on trying to do a bunch of new things this month before my summer break ends so that I won’t have to worry about missing out on any chances to do them.

One thing that I really want to try this month is bringing the budgie boys outside for some sunshine and fresh air. They never really get to go outside, so I’m planning on getting them used being in their travel cage for outside time. I’ll be taking any chance I get to bring them out, especially when it’s nice and warm outside. Hopefully it will be warm enough for me to give them a little mist bath. 🙂

I’m planning on getting another entry done by this Friday for the Healthy Foods for Birds page, and this time it is going to be  Broccoli! Someone I know requested that I do Broccoli next just for fun, so I’ll be working on that throughout the week.

I still have to get those pictures up of the gifts I got for the budgies when I was away, but never got a chance yet. I’m also planning on giving them a nice fresh food supper tomorrow with a few new foods in it, so hopefully that will end up working out.

Out of (and in) Cage Time – Pictures

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As you probably could tell from my last post, I was busy taking pictures today while the budgies were out and about, and there are also lots of pictures of them in their cage too. I just thought that it was time to show you some update pictures on the progress the budgies are making with growing back their flight feathers. Koko first…

As you can see, there are still some feathers that need to be molted out.

Oh yeah, and if you were wondering, that stuff around Koko’s beak is just from the juices off of her veggies. At least you know who has been really enjoying their vegetables lately! 🙂

A back view...

Just a quick shot of her being cute.

Check out Kasper's wings!

Kasper was playing with a loose feather that he just finished pulling out of his wing. Can you tell where it came out from? I’m not sure if it was from where his wing looks a bit white, but it seems likely. Koko was curious about the new little toy too, until he dropped it through the cage bars. That’s when they totally lost interest.

The only other picture I have of Froot Loop, he is still a bit scared of the camera.

You can see his wings better in his other pictures that I posted before, but I just had to throw this picture in too.

Hanging out on top together. (They were trying to avoid me here)

And the last picture from today.

I mentioned before that Koko usually ends up landing on the floor or on other furniture when she takes off for flight, and this is just one example of those many landing spots. She landed on the shelf to the right of their landing cage, so she wasn’t too far off. That is a part from a piano for sheet music that she is standing on.

My Feeding Method – Trial Session One

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On the first day of May I remember posting about my new idea of feeding the budgies their fresh foods 0n/near their landing cage in my post A New Discovery. I was supposed to update on my trial of this idea, but I never got around to it. Anyway, that weekend when I planned on carrying out my new idea; it didn’t really work out well.

Kasper looking innocent and cute.

I decided that the best way to do this would be to start with my normal routine first, then just to change the location of their dishes when I eventually got that far into cleaning. I would first replace their soiled papers from the bottom of their cage, and then take their food and water dishes out to clean and refill with fresh food and water. Then that’s when I would place the dishes on or near their landing cage so that the budgies would attempt to eat out of their cage for basically the first time. Well, when I eventually did this and sat down to wait for them to come out for their flight (and now feeding) time; they just waited there.

Kasper and Koko on the top of their "Master Cage". (Notice how Koko's wings are filling out quite nicely?)

Usually when the cage doors are open the budgies come out and fly around for a bit, then they hang out on their landing cage for a bit, just preening and interacting with each other, (Which was when I was hoping that they would notice the food and start eating) but this time they stayed inside of their cage and almost completely ignored the doors that were wide open. I ended up having to coax them out with some millet spray, but even when they got on their landing cage they ignored the food. I tried to wait it out until they caved in and started eating, but after a bit they just hopped back in their cage. This was the signal that they had enough for the day, so I put the dishes back in and just as I did so, the budgies started eating from the dishes.

The budgies' cage set-up, with their landing cage on the top right. (Pardon the emptiness of their cages, I'm still working on making some toys to fill them up)

I guess they really can be picky little guys, especially with their daily routine and normal activities. If budgies can be this particular about their routines, I can’t imagine how well the larger parrots can keep track of theirs’. Just one little change like where their food dishes are located can make a huge difference, and that is why it is important to be able to observe your bird’s behavior and figure out what is causing a change.

The change that was obviously keeping my budgies from eating was the unfamiliar location of their feeding area, so I’ll have to just adjust my converting method so that I can gradually change it to my new feeding method, giving them time to also adjust. Just like it takes time to gain your bird’s trust, it also takes time to make changes to their routine without any abrupt or confusing events.

Froot Loop trying to win over Koko. (Koko is trying to resist the cuteness here)

Although this trial didn’t go so well, I can try a different approach the next time I try feeding them outside of their cages. I think that the content of their food dishes can also be a factor in their decision on whether or not to eat too because if I tried something more tempting than their plain old seeds like I offered this time, they might change their minds and decide that it is safe to be eating from there.

Slowly creeping over to the camera... (This was his first real encounter with a camera up-close)

Hopefully the next trial session will be a bit more successful and we might make some progress.

And... ATTACK!

The Cage Chronicles – Day 8

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I forgot to post about this but a couple days ago I took the budgies out for a little flight time while I was cleaning their cages again and they had a blast! I decided to just leave them out longer than I had planned, and they couldn’t have been happier. Kasper kept flying around the room like it was his first time really flying, and Froot Loop was also trying to keep up with him.

I’m very glad to report that Koko has finally grown her flight feathers back in! Her wings are nice and full, and now all she has to do is learn how to fly right. So far she has been attempting to take off with the boys when they start flying around the room, but she ends up just fluttering back down to the ground or landing on the furniture, and that is where I come in to help her. First I get her to step up, then I raise my hand up high enough for her to be able to fly back to where she started. I like to encourage her to try to move around on her own, but whenever she lands on the ground or somewhere that she didn’t want to land, she usually just gives up and starts to preen herself.

I have high expectations for her though, and I’m hoping that she will be up and flying with the boys soon enough. She just has to build up her wing muscles because they are probably really weak at this point from the lack of exercise she has had in her life. I’ll have to work with her for the next few months and exercise her wings regularly so that she can get used to flying, and hopefully she’ll get the hang of it.

This time I let the budgies go back in the cage in their own time, and after about an hour and a half they were all back in their cage chirping away. I was pretty happy to see them enjoying their freedom. They have been really improving on comfort levels with being out of their cage and they are already getting used to the different surroundings and obstacles when they are flying around. The little cage that I have set up near their bigger cage (Which I will now call their “landing cage”) is where they usually hang out. This is also where they mainly land after flying a few laps around the room, hence the name.

Nothing much else happened, but I’ll probably be letting them out again tomorrow afternoon, so there will most likely be another update that evening. 🙂

A New Discovery

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I’ve been converting the budgies to their healthy chop diet and they are doing very well with it. So far they haven’t been very stubborn. Each of them are eager to try the fresh foods I’m giving to them. (With the temptation of seeds sprinkled on top of course) I’m really surprised that it didn’t take that long for them to start trying it out. It has only been around 3 months since I really introduced fresh foods to them, and since then I have been gradually adding to their chop mix.

Today I prepared another batch of chop and I mainly added in green peppers, red peppers, corn, peas, and carrots. These batches are only meant to last weekly in fridges because I don’t have  enough freezer room for bigger batches. I didn’t have much of a variety of vegetables to work with, so I just added in other things to their meals. I made a hardboiled egg and crushed the egg shell into it after mashing it up. Then I added in a teaspoon of Clay-Cal, and a 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon (They seem to like it better with cinnamon) which I separated into each dish. After I rinsed, drained and mixed all of this I added a sprinkle of seeds on top. I do this so that the budgies will have something in there that they are familiar with already. When they go to get some seeds, they pick up the tastes of the other foods. That’s what got them started on nibbling on the different foods.

I’m used to them just going for the seeds by now because that is usually all they do, but you could imagine how surprised I was when I saw Kasper dive in and grab out a piece of corn to start eating. I was so thrilled to see the progress he was making already, but what surprised me more was that when he accidentally dropped it, he went right down to the bottom of the cage to finish it! I was so happy, but then I noticed that the corn was picking up other debris from the bottom of the cage and I got a bit grossed out knowing Kasper was trying to eat from it. That’s when I got this really cool idea.

Instead of feeding them their fresh foods in their cage, why not try getting them to eat it outside? I’d make this a regular thing and get them to come out on their smaller cage to eat. It would make cleaning much easier, give them out of cage time, and it would be more fun for all of us all at the same time. After they finish their fresh foods, I could just fill their cage dishes with fresh water and dry foods like seeds, or other things like pellets and nuts that I plan on getting in the near future. (There are actually these new, really cool and yummy looking Totally Organic Pellets that I’d like to try giving to the birds called Crumplets that I heard of here.) It would make life just a bit more easier for me, and funner too. Change is good every now and then, and I think that this is going to be the next big change for us. Hopefully the budgies won’t mind the change and maybe even enjoy it some day.

A picture of the TOP Crumplets that I found on The Birdsafe Store.

Now that I have it somewhat planned out, I’ve got to actually do it now. Since I don’t know how they will react to the change, I’ll just have to gradually build up to the full switch at the right time. I’m thinking that next weekend would be a good time to actually start, so I’ve got plenty of time to prepare. Until then, I’m just going to continue feeding them inside their cage. I’ll be posting about this again as soon as I begin. Wish me luck! 🙂

The Cage Chronicles – Day 7

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As I mentioned before, I wanted to try to work harder on getting these up and running again. So here’s an update post on everyone and what’s going on.

Today when I was changing their food and water, I let the budgies come out for some flying and exercising. Kasper and Froot Loop were both out and about after a few minutes, and Koko wasn’t far behind. She looked like she wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon, so I decided to entice her to come out with millet. That didn’t exactly work out so I just took her out by getting her to step up and gently cupping my hand around her body so she wouldn’t hurt herself if she decided that she didn’t want to come out. It worked, so they were all out together after about 5 minutes.

They actually were all very happy to be out and seemed totally comfortable sitting together on their old (travel) cage. The smaller cage is on top of a type of cabinet that is maybe 1 1/2 feet away from the bigger cage itself, and is close to being level with it so the budgies always like to fly their whenever they come out of their cage. They were preening and chirping away up there happily between flying and causing trouble for about 15 minutes until I finished moving things around in their cage, then I lured them back into their cage. They were all pretty cooperative with me today, so we are making some progress.

Koko still does the same trick with holding onto the cage with one foot then trying to step up with the other. She is really a clever little one.

Froot Loop is getting a bit more tame. Kasper and he both fly to my hand for some millet spray now. Sometimes they even fly to it when I don’t have millet spray, then they realize there isn’t any treat and take off. It’s funny to see how motivated they can get by food, I wonder if I can find anything else that motivates them.

Millet Spray = Yummm…

The Cage Chronicles – Day 6

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These posts are becoming few and far between, so I will have to try harder to get these going again. 🙂

Today I did a full clean-out of the cage, and the budgies were let out because of this. I lured them out with millet spray first, then I set them out onto their small carrier cage so that they could just hang out. They were content to be up there for about an hour just preening and sun-bathing, which is a good sign that they are getting more comfortable with coming out.

Froot Loop is becoming more and more tame, but Koko is still wary and only using one foot to step-up. She is so clever sometimes. Kasper is also getting a bit better, but still not as tame as he used to be. Hopefully tomorrow I can get a chance to take them out again, but for now they are just enjoying their clean cage and treats.